AP sources: Bears get lift at LB, add Edmunds, Edwards
CHICAGO (AP) — The Chicago Bears made two big additions at linebacker, agreeing to contracts with Buffalo Bills two-time Pro Bowler Tremaine Edmunds and former Philadelphia Eagle T.J. Edwards, two people familiar with the situations said Monday.
Edmunds’ deal is worth $72 million over four years with $50 million guaranteed. Edwards is due $19.5 million over three years, with $12 million guaranteed.
The Bears also added to their offensive line, agreeing to a three-year, $30 million contract with Tennessee guard Nate Davis, a person familiar with the situation said.
The people spoke on the condition of anonymity because the agreements can’t be announced until the new league year opens on Wednesday.
Edmunds gives the Bears the playmaking outside linebacker they’ve been seeking since they dealt Roquan Smith to Baltimore prior to last season’s trade deadline. Chicago made that move after an impasse in contract negotiations.
Edmunds had 565 tackles in five seasons for Buffalo after being drafted out of Virginia Tech in 2018 with the No. 16 overall pick — eight spots after Smith was selected by the Bears.
Edmunds made Pro Bowls in 2019 and 2020. He had a career-low 102 tackles last season.
Edwards, who grew up about an hour north of Soldier Field in Lake Villa, Ill., played in 61 games and made 47 starts for Philadelphia after going undrafted out of Wisconsin in 2019.
Edwards had a breakout year for a dominant defense in 2022 that helped lead the Eagles to the Super Bowl. He led the team with a personal-best 159 tackles from his middle linebacker position and set career highs with 10 tackles for loss and seven passes defended. In the Super Bowl loss to Kansas City, he had six tackles and a pass defended.
Davis, a third-round pick out of Charlotte by Tennessee in 2019, has started 54 games. He ended last season on injured reserve because of an ankle injury.
The Bears set a franchise record for losses while finishing with a league-worst 3-14 record. They had one of the worst defenses in the NFL and, on offense, they had big issues in the passing game. But they’ve made some big moves since the end of the season.
The Bears agreed Friday to trade the No. 1 overall pick in the draft to Carolina, two people familiar with the deal said. Chicago addressed a big need for a playmaker to help quarterback Justin Fields by acquiring star receiver D.J. Moore from the Panthers along with the No. 9 and No. 61 overall picks in 2023, a first-rounder in 2024 and a second-rounder in 2025.
Chicago also hired Big Ten Commissioner Kevin Warren as team president and purchased a 326-acre plot of land in suburban Arlington Heights that the organization has been sizing up for a new enclosed stadium.
AP Pro Football Writer Rob Maaddi contributed to this report. ___
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